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Old 07-14-2012, 06:35 PM
Location: San Antonio, TX
8,400 posts, read 20,121,491 times
Reputation: 4435


Originally Posted by Jburneysullivan View Post
Welcome to San Antonio! I am a native San Antonian but I have lived in Munich, San Francisco, Houston, Austin and NYC for 2 months. The Dominion is off of what we call I-10, which is heavy traffic coming into town (south) during rush hour but not in the direction your husband will be driving if you live on the NW side of town. Property values here are closely linked to school districts, so you are wise to ask about that. On the NW side the school district is Northside ISD, which is very highly rated. In fact it is at the top of the heap, along with North East ISD and Alamo Heights ISD. I was a teacher in NEISD many years, and proud to be there, but NISD had a great superintendent till now- he just retired- who steered them to the top. Teacher pay is highest at these 3 districts, so it should be no surprise property values stay up. We pay for schools mostly thru property taxes in Texas, so the more house you can afford, the more tax you will pay. Still, life here is a bargain compared to major hubs like NYC and SF. NISD does have its problem areas, though, so I'd rent first and drive through the neighborhoods. Get a realtor to help you, but you may want to start with something like Realtor.com. I'd drive to address after address for sale, checking out the neighborhoods as I go. Beware living in Boerne or other townlets north of SA off I-10 because the traffic into town can be brutal. You should also know there are a lot of newish subdivisions out west off 151, Potranco Road, outside 1604. They may look nice from the outside but if they are sold too cheap the neighbors may be tough, so to speak. Violent crime and drugs, with gang involvement, are real problems on the NW side, as well as elsewhere in the city. The plain "west side" is up and down. Some old, very tough neighborhoods are just unsafe. You will see front yards protected by chain link fences in bad areas, for instance. Look for apartments- lots of them close together create crime enclaves, even if they look "nice" from the outside. If you want to know if they are "section 8" apartments/houses for poor people, look at the cars in the parking lots, and see if San Antonio Housing Authority or Bexar County Housing Authority will tell you if the address is section 8, or subsidized housing. Getting into town and spending the gas money to drive around will tell you better than any person can. Another thing, we pay 8 and 1/2 % sales tax here- that's one way we compensate for having no income tax in Texas, so be prepared for a bite when you shop. As to parks, there are several north of 1604 off I-10. Start by googling Friedrich Park- a nature preserve. They have tours, summer camps, etc. designed to educate locals, especially kids, about the plants and animals of Texas. Great stuff. We have an active bicyclist population who seem to be centered on the NW side. Things to do: Hardberger Park has a nice dog park, and nearby is the Jewish Community Center open to everyone. They have wonderful facilities and programs such as exercise classes, yoga, day care, big Olympic pool, tennis courts with leagues and tournaments for amateurs, and an active community theatre. Sea World is west of town and is not to be missed, with water sport shows, performances, and of course sea animals. The city zoo is large and fun, with a great mini train for younger kids, and worth a trip toward downtown to see it. We have an active, professional symphony with some programs aimed at kids. The Majestic Theatre downtown brings in popular shows like Broadway musicals. We have seen La Cage au Folles recently, starring George Hamilton, and Stomp. The Attic Theater provides more intellectual drama. NEISD has a top notch "Fame" type performing arts high school. The shows are surprisingly professional- dance, musicals like Cats, and straight drama including Shakespeare. Trinity University, a leading liberal arts university, hosts famous guest lecturers on topics political and cultural, and also boasts super theater. Don't forget the Alamo downtown, and the other four old Spanish missions now connected by a trail. Our Riverwalk is authentic, not like some cities' imitations, and provides great restaurants, nightlife, and barge rides with tour guides. For sports, we have of course the Spurs basketball team, and also a hockey team and a B league baseball team called the Missions. Splashtown is a fun venue for kids, on the east side,off I-35. Beware the summer heat- it has been in the 100s lately. The heat runs from the end of April thru October. While we have Little League baseball and Pop Warner football for kids (with a great cheerleading program for girls), you may want to sign yours up for gymnastics which is in the "AC" (air conditioning). Our larger churches offer some terrific kids programs, including children's choirs. Beware signing your kids up for "private" schools, which can be charter schools funded by the state. They are not required to hire teachers with college degrees, or teach kids the same number of hours as public schools. They were not even required to take the state achievement tests as of a few years ago- research it at the Texas Education Agency website, if you want, and while you are there check out the academic scorecards of public schools. There are lots of new, storefront private schools with lousy reputations. We have seen scandals involving physical beating of students as punishment, and financial fraud in several cases. Older privat schools, like Incarnate Word for girls and Central Catholic for boys, have great reputations. Also check out "magnet" schools in the public schools- NISD has a health professions and a communications high school too. There is a Children's Museum downtown that just got a grant of 2 and 1/2 million, and the Witte Museum north of that has a hands-on experiential children's museum that I believe has just been refurbished. Last, take them up in our signature Tower of the Americas for a view well worth the few bucks it costs. The Tower top rotates on top of the pedestal, so as you eat a meal, the view changes! I will stop now, but there is more! Enjoy!
Jburneysullivan, a few paragraph breaks, please!
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Old 07-15-2012, 11:53 AM
Location: Boerne area
706 posts, read 1,520,208 times
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Missaggie - glad to see you are considering Fair Oaks. You can find a house in the upper end of your price range. Boerne ISd is a great school district, and is the reason we chose this area.
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Old 07-15-2012, 01:00 PM
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Thy Fair Oaks Ranch in Boerne. Best public schools (Boerne ISD) in the San Antonio area.
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Old 01-12-2014, 02:14 PM
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We too are relocating to San Antonio in June. We have been looking in the Boerne area (North-West area). I specifically would like a neighborhood with nice amenities like a community pool and tennis courts with lots of activities. Our price range is around $450,000. Another consideration is schools for our 9 and 10 year olds. Our 9 year old is dyslexic so she will need special assistance and our 10 year old is gifted and we want him in a school that offers gifted and talented services. Any advice is appreciated!
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Old 01-13-2014, 06:17 AM
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There are plenty of houses in the area, in the stated price range. In the area your husband will be working, Boerne schools are top of the list. Sable Chase has homes in the price range you mention, and is just inside the Boerne ISD boundary. Fair Oaks would be at the high end of the price scale. There are several neighborhoods in Boerne well within that range.
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Old 01-13-2014, 11:37 AM
Location: Boerne, Texas
309 posts, read 463,442 times
Reputation: 240
You may want to look into Frontgate at Fair Oaks Ranch. This is Boerne schools, and I believe the houses are around your price range. Excellent location with easy access to I-10. For something a little less expensive, but with a very active community with pool and other activities, try the highest end section of Herff Ranch (Houses get up to about $375-$400k). Tons of families with kids. Kids can walk to Cibolo Creek Elementary, which is one of the best schools in the entire San Antonio area.
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